Friday, April 26, 2013

The Bump in the Road

Well I’m not really sure where to start. It’s probably been one of the hardest weeks of my life, but I’m doing ok, and I’m getting through it. I guess it’s probably easiest to just start from the beginning so that is where I will start.

Last Thursday morning I woke up and my lips were huge! They had literally doubled in size. And I had these big blister/fluid pockets under my top lip. I immediately thought it was an allergic reaction, but couldn’t think of what on earth I would have been allergic too. As we got ready for the day the swelling in my lips went down quite a bit and the blisters weren’t bothering me too much so I decided I would go to the temple with my district and then we would go to the health clinic after to make an appointment.  The Temple was amazing as always. We did sealing’s together as a district J I went and made my appointment but the doctor couldn’t see me until four o’clock, so I went throughout the rest of my usual p-day activities.

When the doctor came in to check on me it was pretty normal until he looked at the blisters in my mouth. I could tell that he got really concerned. which made me nervous.  He asked me about some symptoms and I had some of them so he went and got the other doctor to come take a look at me as well. They both went out into hall to talk and left me alone in the room. I was starting to get pretty freaked out. They came back in and told me that they thought I might be developing something called Steven Johnson Syndrome which is a life threatening condition caused by an allergic reaction to a drug.  The best guess was the Tamiflu I had to take last week when I had Influenza B. He sent me to the ER because he wanted to get a second opinion just because of the possible seriousness of the situation.  Off to the ER! My favorite kind of trips. Not really. Oh well. We were there for about 3 hours. They pretty much ruled out Steven Johnson syndrome but wanted to keep a close eye on me. That was a relief. But they still didn’t know what was wrong with me. When we got back to the MTC I was able to call home for 7 min to let my parents know I had been to the ER. That was a perk! It was nice to talk to my family for a little bit. 

My First visit to the ER

Friday was kind of hard. I tried my best to keep up with the MTC schedule. But it was getting harder and harder as the day went on. During our personal study time I prayed to my heavenly father to help me have the strength to get the things done that I needed to. I then opened my Book of Mormon and it happened to be Mosiah chapter 24. I began to read and when I came to verse 14 I started to cry, because I knew it was just for me. “And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as a witness for me hereafter, and that ye may know for a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.” I full heartedly believe that if you want to talk to your heavenly father, get on your knees. If you want him to talk to you, open your scriptures. I have found sooooo much comfort through the scriptures. The book of Mormon has been such an amazing blessing and I have come to love it more and more each time that I open it. Heavenly Father is looking out for me :)

After dinner my throat really really hurt and it began to feel like it was swelling up, but I tried to stay strong because I already felt bad that every time I had to leave one of my companions had to come with me, so they would miss out on class as well. Someone asked me if I was ok, and that’s what pushed me over my limit. I started to hyperventilate and struggle for breathe through my tears. Hermana Staley and Hermana Savoie took me to the health clinic and the doctor calmed me down gave me some medicine, and had me lay down for an hour. He then had us go to the BYU student health center to pick up some Epipens for me just as a safe guard. To end the day the Elders in my district gave me a priesthood blessing. They are so awesome and I love them soooooo much. They are amazing young men and they will be outstanding missionaries. The people of Argentina are blessed to have them!

Saturday and Sunday I got worse. I would wake up and my lips would be sealed shut and blistered. I would have to pull them apart which was pretty painful. My whole mouth was covered in blisters and sores and every time I would try to drink or eat anything I would get a deep pressure/pain in my chest. It got so bad that I couldn’t eat or drink anything. Sunday night one of my sweet companions sister Staley and another sister in my district sister Hansen were so worried about me that they took me to the doctor again. I was sent to the ER yet again. This time the doctor gave me a new diagnosis and sent me back with some “magic mouth wash” to hopefully help numb my mouth so I could eat.
Monday it just got worse and I was starting to feel the weakening effects of no food or water in my body. After having a checkup with the doctor, he sent me to one of the counselors, and from there I went to President Jenkins. With being sick and trying to keep up with the rigorous schedule of the MTC, plus having a companion who was just emotionally draining and harder to be around then I thought, I just couldn’t get better. It was hard, but he suggested that I needed to go home to recover. There wasn’t any way I was going to get better at the MTC, things were only getting worse.  We called my parents and talked it over. It was sooooo hard because I really didn’t want to leave my district because I loved them so much. That was hardest part about leaving. I was also really scared about what people would say or think about me coming home. But so far everyone has been really supportive and understanding. So thank you so much. I can’t even tell you how much that means to me. It was hard, but I know that it was the only way I was going to get better and continue to serve my mission. My dad came and picked me up Monday night from the MTC and I am now home for a couple weeks until I’m ready to go back out. 

I was able to go to the doctor the other day. We still haven't figured out exactly what I have. He took his best guess, so I have gotten a different diagnosis from every doctor I have seen... I guess time will tell, and hopefully heal. He did give me some medicine that has really helped to numb my mouth so I can eat. I have gotten a lot better the past few days and I’m regaining my strength! 
It’s a difficult time in my missionary life, but I know I have a Heavenly Father who loves me. He knows everything from beginning to end. and everything he does is for my eternal good. I know that I will grow stronger from this trial and grow closer to him. i just need to trust in his timing. Everything will work out. “Everything will work out in the end, and if it doesn’t work out, it’s not the end.” Thanks for all the Love and support you guys are awesome! And hopefully I will back out there soon! Love ya :)

Sunday going on our temple walk :)

My District seeing me off Monday night :( Te quiero!!!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Half way through the MTC (3 weeks down 3 to go)

Hey everyone!
     Well I probably won’t have too much to write this week but I did have some adventures. So my cold actually turned into the flu. Friday morning I went to the health clinic because I was coughing so bad I couldn't breathe! They gave me a strep test and flu test and turns out I had influenza B. Why the heck did I have to get a flu shot!? Oh well, I guess they just sometimes don’t work.

So I was sent into Quarantine... sounds scary huh? It has many names here at the MTC, Mormon prison, torture, isolation, the liberty jail of the MTC etc. So I had to say farewell to my district and go live in an isolated room for the next 2 days. Luckily the first day there was another sister there so I had some company. The next morning Dr. Brown let her go and I had to stay. Not fun. They brought me my meals and I just slept, ate, and studied. Then Sunday morning I was set free! :) It was the best day ever. And the care package from home really helped me out the cough drops were awesome. Thanks so much!

It was nice to be reunited with my district and zone. They were all happy to see that I had survived isolation.  My teachers are awesome here at the MTC. Our main teachers are Hermano Frost and Hermano Khun. Then we have some other "floater" teachers that help us out all the time. Our lesson with our investigator Luis (hermano Frost) on Monday went really good! I talked a lot more then I normally do in a lesson. I told him about how the Book of Mormon has blessed my family and promised him that it could do the same for him. The spirit was strong and it was a great lesson. When we were leaving we all went to shake his hand, but when I went to shake his hand he just stood there and looked at me. I wondered if I had done something wrong and didn’t know what to do. Then he broke out of character of being the investigator and said "you’re not going to kill me?" we all laughed and I told him that I was better now and no longer had the flu. The teachers have all being so thoughtful and have pulled me out to work with me one on one to get me all caught up in class. The teachers here rock!

     So our Tuesday night devotional was amazing! Any guesses at who came to talk to us?! Any? Any? Well I will tell you. RICHARD G. SCOTT!!! No one was expecting him so it was really cool when we saw him and the whole auditorium stood up. His talk was so good and uplifting. He talked about prayer and how heavenly father loves us so much and he always hears us.

There were so many good points from his talk. I’ll just share a couple. He talked about how there are three ways that god answers our prayers. First with feelings of peace or comfort, second an unsettling feeling and third sometimes he doesn't answer, but this is to let us grow and act. This is an act of trust in you to make the right choice. Isn’t it cool to know that heavenly father trusts us to make the right choices? I thought it was cool. He also talked about how everything God does in your life is for your eternal good. He knows you. He loves you, and he wants the best for you. He told us to change from asking what we want, to what he wants for us. One thing that was really cool was he was inspired to give us an apostolic blessing. He blessed us that if we were learning a new language we would be able to learn it. He told us that the Lord has called us to succeed. It may be hard, but he wants us to grow. He will fit the tasks to our capabilities. He will never ask us to do something that we can’t do. The spirit was soooooooo strong.
Prayer has become something that has really changed for me since I have been on my mission. I have really come to understand it and rely on it so much more. I have prayed here at the MTC like I’ve never prayed before. I think a big part of that is because Heavenly Father is the only family member I have that I can actually physically talk to. My relationship with him through prayer has been strengthened so much! I know He loves me and He is always there to listen and comfort and guide. He loves you all too and He wants to hear from you! I’m so happy we have the blessing of prayer. Isn’t it just amazing!? :)

     Well that’s about everything exciting that happened this week. I did memorize the first vision in Spanish though! I was pretty excited about that. Well, hope you are all doing well. And I would love to hear from you! It’s been fun to get letters from everyone letting me know what going on in their lives. You guys are awesome and I love you all so much! Only 3 more weeks in the MTC!

Hermana Savage :)

Thursday, April 11, 2013

MTC week 2

Hola Everyone!

     This week was pretty awesome! Thanks for all the letters and Dear Elders, they are always fun to get and make any day lots better :)
WE ARE GETTING A TEMPLE, WE ARE GETTING A TEMPLE, WE ARE GETTING A TEMPLE!!!!! AHHHHH! :D I am so excited I can’t even tell you! I wish I had been there for the announcement to hear all the excitement in cedar. What was it like? When they announced it in conference I was in shock and my hands went straight over my mouth. Everyone in my district looked right at me and smiled and I of course started to cry. Hermana Stayley gave me a great big hug. I can’t wait for next general conference to see if there will be another big announcement that will change my life, like the past two. We are soooo blessed. I really hope I will be back before it opens so I can go to the open house and stuff. Any idea of when it will be completed? Conference was amazing and I loved being able to watch it in the MTC because the spirit was already so strong that each talk was just amazing!
After conference on Saturday my zone decided to have an Easter egg hunt because we have some pretty awesome Zone leaders. It was really fun. Saturday night we had a district meeting and shared our thoughts from conference. These are my favorite meetings because the spirit is sooo incredibly strong. I love my district so much. The elders are awesome, the sisters are awesome and we get along so well. I think the reason we bond so fast is because we are spiritually bonding. I love this environment and it’s definitely an environment I want to try to create in my future home. I have discovered that I have some type of allergy to the spirit because I am always crying. There must be something in the air at the MTC.
      So last time I said hermana Savoie is going to Texas. I meant to say Salt Lake city she is from Texas. I just have to type so fast that I mess up a lot. So I apologize if my spelling is horrible haha.
 Last week when we went to the Temple we went and did sealings. It was my first time doing them and I absolutely looooved it! Being able to be a daughter being sealed to her parents for time and all eternity was the best feeling in the world. I love the temple and the peace that is there. It’s nice to get a little bit of a break from the missionary work on Thursday mornings to go to the temple.
The other night I was able to get a blessing from Elder Varner. I am sooo thankful for the power of the priesthood. It is such a blessing. Thank you so much to all of you who are worthy priesthood holders. You are my role models.
     Sunday night after conference we had another devotional and Vocal Point from BYU came. They were amazing! And then Tuesday night our devotional speaker was the author of the Work and the Glory books. He talked on personal Revelation. It was great! Monday morning when I was reading my scriptures I came across Moroni 8:2-3. I put my name in for Moroni's and it really hit me. I can really feel all the prayers helping me out. So thank you soooooo much! I love you all so much.
So yesterday I had the best experience ever! We were practicing inviting our investigators to pray to know if god cares, and to know if the church is true. We had to get into character and when I was playing the investigator it felt so real. I had to learn how to pray before I agreed to get on my knees and pray, and I was a little hesitant because I had never prayed before and I wasn't sure if I was doing it right but I gave it my best shot. As I was praying to know if this church was true and if it was something God wants me to do I was hit with the spirit so Strong that I stooped right in the middle of my prayer. It was the most amazing feeling ever. As the investigator I truly got the answer that this church is true and as myself I got that answer too. I know without a doubt that this church is true and I love it with all my heart! This Gospel is sooooo amazing and it makes me so happy :) I can’t wait to share it with others.

   Oh my goodness so on Tuesday Elder Vaner was explaining to us how he really, really hates dogs. He stood up and was going to demonstrate to us how he would swing his scriptures and smack the dog away. He swung with full gusto including sound effects and the handle on his scripture case ripped, sending his scriptures at full speed like a cannonball right into Elder Cavin’s unsuspecting stomach. They were both instantly on the floor, Elder Cavin in pain laughing, and Elder Varner dying of laughter. We were all laughing so hard that some of the other district came over to see what had happened. We have a good time together haha.

    Well I hope everything is going good for everyone. Things are getting better for me, except for I got sick last night. Which really sucks because all I want to do is sleep and I can’t really :( luckily today is p-day so I could take a little bit of a nap. It’s just a cold and a pretty bad cough, but hopefully it gets better soon! It’s crazy that I’m in my third week at the MTC already. The time is starting to fly! I love you all so much and can’t wait to hear from you!

                                  Love, Hermana Savage 

Easter egg hunt with our zone

 Hermana Staley, Funke,Hansen,me and Savoie

 Elder Dial, Cavin, Stanford, Varner.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

April 4, 2013- Ist week in the MTC

Dear Family and Friends,
     I cant believe its already been a week, and at the same time i feel like i have been in the MTC forever. Its Great and I love it, but i would be lying if I didn't say there have been some really tough days. Like some of the hardest in my life. But I've also had some of the best. My companions are great! Yes I have two. Hermana Savoie from Texas (originally New Orleans), and Hermana Staley from Roy. We are the coolest trio here! Im the senior companion right now. we are really starting to bond and the other two sisters in our district are awesome. Hermana Hansen from Draper and Hermana Funke from Oregon. We are all going to Tempe Arizona except for Hermana Savoie. She is going to Texas. the Elders in my district are Elder Dial, Cavin, Stanford, and Varner. we are all like best friends now and we have a really good time together.
     The first three days were crazy, but they were amazing. We jumped right in to apanish and we actually had to teach our first investigator Arturo on friday. In Spanish. Crazy right?! Pretty much day two! It was crazy and i was soooo nervous. But we actually did ok and got through the entire lesson in spanish. Plus i was able to bare my testimony in spanish at the end. its amazing how much you learn in the first few days. but its exhausting! Friday night when we were walking back to our residence hall an elder came up to me and said " Your shoes are untied!"  everyone started laughing so hard because i frantically looked down at my feet in my flats, and i guess i looked really realy concerned. they thought it was hillarious. I just smiled and told them i was tired. some nights i can fall alseep as soon as i hit the pillow, but others my mind is going a million miles an hour running on Spanish.
     Saturday was a hard day. our lesson with Arturo didnt go as well. its so frustrating to know what i want to say and how i can awnser his questions but i cant because i cant say it in spanish. I can understand alot more than i can speak. Its so hard and its a lot of pressure. We are in the same classroom studying about 12 hours a day. Some days go by faster than others but they are deffinitly long days! Spanish is hard because of how fast paced we are learning everything and its sooooo easy to get discouraged. But im not alone in the way im feeling, so i know i will be ok. Sunday night at dinner an elder from Hawaii sat by me. hes been here for a while and is learning french. He asked me how i was doing and how the language was coming along. He then told me about how in the first couple weeks he really started to wonder if he should be here and he wanted to call his branch president to have him send him home because he felt like a mission might just not be for him. But he promised that it gets better. I REALLY need to hear that because i seriously had the exact same thoughts going through my head. so its nice to know that im not the only one going through this. its super hard and discouraging but i can get through it because this is were i need to be and the lord will always be there to help me out. like everyone says. focus on learning the language of the spirit, and Spanish will come in time.
     Easter sunday was amazing! In our morning devotional Bishop Causse (general bishop) and his wife spoke to us. we had sacrament all together so it was passed to over 3,000 missionaries! might be a historic event, not sure. but i know jesus was smiling :) we then had a testimony meeting with our zone. the spirit was so strong! i actually got up and bore mine . its been so long since i've done that. we went on our temple walk, and it was so much fun to get to know our Zone better. the elders are hillarious! hopefully i can attach some pictures of it. the sunday evening devo was Sheri Dew. one of my favorite things she said was "because you are on the lords divine errand, there is never a day you will be alone. you can ask for help from the other side. Gods angels are here." I immediately felt this overwhelming love coming from Grandma Loni, and Grandpa Savage. I started to cry as i knew they were sitting right beside me.
     Tuesday was another really good day. we had a devotional and Elder Michael T. Ringwood of the seventy spoke on enduring to the end. he told us " If you endure to the end of your mission, you will return home with the tools you will need to endure to the end of your life." we then had a district meeting and it kind of turned into a testimony meeting. I loved what Elder Stanford said " When you fell that your mission is to hard, and you cant do it, it is too hard. and you cant... But with the lord you can." that really hit me. then he told us that he feel asleep during the devo while he was writting endure to the end. haha how ironic! My branch president, President Sanchez (who says he can remember me from when i was little and in there ward in Provo, small world!) said  "change endure to Enjoy." Enjoy to the end! i know that is what this gospel is all about. being happy! and enjoying life throughout eternity.
     One night Hermana Savoie broke down. we just went and talked outside listened and me and Hermana Staley tried to offer words of comfort to her. listening to her made me break down as well because i realized how blessed i am to have such a strong, loving, and supportive family. And parents that love me and set a good example for me. which is something she doesnt have. as all three of us sat there hugging and crying i felt a forth pair of loving arms wrap around us. our brother Jesus Christ. He is always there and i love him soooo much for everything he has done for me. I love my companions and how we can strengthen one another when we are feeling down.
     Yesterday was another one of those hard days. Me and Hermana Staley had a hard time with our lesson and with all the stress. But we cried it out, and at lunch we both got letters that had exactly what we each needed to hear. its amazing how many small miracles the lord gives us. mine was from the one and only Erik Gray :) I cant thank you enough Erik.
well i better bring this to a close but i just want to let you all know how much i love you and i would love to hear from you! is way easy for while I'm in the MTC because I get it the same day!  love you all! talk to you soon!
                  Love, Hermana Savage

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

MTC Address

Here is Jessica's address at the MTC. 
 Sister Jessica Savage
MTC mailbox #103
AZ-TEM 0507
2005 N. 900 E.
Provo, UT  84604-1793

She will be there until around May 7th. We received a letter from her and she is doing well. She gave us a  list of all the things she forgot or realizes that she needs. She says that letters and packages are like Christmas so if you have time to write, drop her a note.
You can also sent her a note from . They will print your email as a letter and deliver it to the MTC the same day.